Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Mission Kashmir - Gulmarg (Day 3)

It was decided the previous day that we would go to Gulmarg next. And so, after a lazy breakfast at the guest house we boarded our Qualis. The driver was kinda unhappy that we caled him at 8am and we had not even woken up by then ;-) . Irfan called in sick and could not join us for the day.

We started our 2 hour journey at around 10am ultimately. The ride through the srinagar roads was pretty good and once we hit the highway it just got smoother. All the way towards gulmarg , we could see the snow capped mountains and the lush green meadows. It was almost like the mountains were eager to welcome us. The only hiccup in the drive was a traffic jam for over one hour because of a protest from school children of a village.

We reached Gulmarg at around 12 in the afternoon. The sight was amazing. We decided not to waste more time and go up the snow capped peak. Gulmarg has a trolley service which takes you all the way upto the peak, and we did just that. Once we got into the cable car, a few of us were kinda nervous about its stability. someone remarked that the trolley was struck with lightning last month, and it was getting just a bit cloudy ! Nevertheless the ride was smooth up the mountain. When we got down, it was all white on the ground. There were some skiers, who were offering us a ride to a nearby point from where we could see the LOC. 3 of us tried that while Gabbar managed to run on the snow. After a few patel shots at the peak, we decided to go back. Gabbar meanwhile had managed to run quite far , enought to attract the attention of the army posted there in outposts. Luckily enough the army was from our country and Gabbar managed to come back after a few threats from them.

While going back, we decided to walk down for a short distance. Within minutes we found ourselves walking on plush green meadows intercepted by streams of water running down the mountain. Pink, yellow and green flowers, added to the beauty of these meadows, and made our walk really amazing. It ended up to be a good 1 hour climb down to the place where we left our car. Without wasting more time, we drove back to Srinagar with a small break in between for tea and samosas .

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